BOCA RATON – After a disappointing season, Florida Atlantic knew it would have to win the Sun Belt tournament to get into the NCAA tournament going into Thursday’s game against South Alabama.
But that just got more difficult after Thursday’s 79-76 overtime loss to the Jaguars, as the Owls will now finish no better than sixth place and miss out on a bye that the top five teams get.
That means FAU will have to win four games in four days to win the conference tournament in Hot Springs, Ark.
The Owls (11-17, 7-8) last four wins had been by two points or less or in overtime, and the Owls were 2-1 in overtime games this season, but the Owls could not repeat that when they needed to most.
“We are built for overtime, with our conditioning,” said guard Dennis Mavin.
“We were confident,” said guard Shavar Richardson, who had 20 points for the Owls.
But it was the Jaguars who jumped on the Owls in overtime, scoring the first six points and the Owls never recovered.
It was the third straight loss for FAU, and second of the season to the Jaguars (16-10, 8-7).
“The team has been inconsistent all year. That is the reality,” FAU coach Mike Jarvis said.
Pre-game honors: Senior guard Alex Tucker and junior guard Raymond Taylor were honored before the start of Thursday’s game for achievements made earlier this season. Tucker became the career assists leader Feb. 9, while Taylor scored the 1,000th point of his career Feb. 11.
FAU’s final home game is Saturday at 7 p.m. when the Owls host Troy, and the ceremony recognizing the seniors will be a short one. Tucker and Richardson are the only seniors on the roster.Copyright © 2015, Los Angeles Times